The Big South Fork of the Cumberland River and its main tributaries, the Clear Fork, North White Oak and New River offer visitors a variety of whitewater paddling opportunities. While on the river you may still see the results of previous agricultural, mining and logging practices, the land today has a quality of wildness with limited access and sparse development.
The river is a dynamic system which changes constantly. Expect the unexpected for conditions change quickly. The following links will provide you with information which will help you to plan a safe and enjoyable paddling trip in the Big South Fork.
Additional information on paddling in the Big South Fork and on commercial outfitters is available at either park visitor center.
Chris Arp, a local paddler from Knoxville Tennessee has filmed several paddling trips down the Big South Fork River. View the clips of the groups adventures down the river and through Double Falls Rapids (45 seconds), Washing Machine (11 seconds) and The Ell (40 seconds). Together these rapids are refered to as "The Big Three".
Did You Know?
The Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area protects only 14% of its watershed. Unfortunately it is the lower end of the watershed, so that everything which happens outside the park, impacts the parks water quality.